The continued under expenditure and non-compliance of basic fiduciary responsibilities by Local Government and other provincial departments begs the question whether performance target setting and evaluation of officials is being done properly in accordance with the requirements of the Systems Act.
I have on behalf of the Democratic Alliance, submitted a question for written reply to the MEC for Local Government, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, asking whether regular, quarterly Performance Management Evaluation in his department and in all municipalities are being undertaken as per section 57 and chapter 3 of the Systems Act.
The Scopa report presented to the Legislature last week highlights how the Accounting Officer of the Department of Local Government presented statements for audit that were not in accordance with general accounting practices.
In the same report it is repeated across many departments how there has been non-compliance with supply chain and procurement issues.
In the report requests are made for certain compliance issues to be part of the performance evaluation of officials.
Of concern is why these non-compliance issues, as stated in the report, are to be part of future performance management evaluations only now?
The question we need to ask is whether performance management contracts and targets are being correctly set so that the performance of officials can be accurately evaluated.
Performance management evaluations and the consequences thereof (both positive and negative) need to be acted upon seriously if we are to lift this province out of the service delivery quagmire we are currently experiencing.
At the next meeting of the Portfolio Committee on Local Government in the Legislature I will be requesting a report on all cases of poor performance evaluation in the department and in all municipalities in the province with respect to Section 56 and 57 Managers and corrective or disciplinary steps taken in each case to solve under-performance.
In addition I will, in conjunction with my DA-colleagues in the Legislature, be requesting that all provincial departments be investigated as to the thoroughness of compliance of performance management requirements.
With the ongoing failure of financial discipline and service delivery in the province it is clear that performance management is not being undertaken as regularly as it ought to be done.
The citizens of this province are entitled to an efficient, accountable public service.
On a daily basis the public through own experience and media observe inept officialdom and bad service delivery in the province.
However, little is ever mentioned of appropriate action being taken against officials to rectify the problems observed.
Businesses and investors must have the confidence and peace of mind to know that slack officialdom will be dealt with and rectified in departments on a regular basis.
Dacre Haddon, MPL